Our coaches rang in with more information!
Varsity A Soccer
Varsity A soccer had an exciting season, led by Mercedes Chien and Urvi Gupta, both Gr. 8, and Alyssa Amick, and Gabi Gupta, both Gr. 7. Coach Chrissy Chang, reports, “We faced many tough opponents but were still able to put the ball in the back of the net.” She added, “Every player contributed to our awesome soccer season.“ Nikita Parulkar, Gr. 7, was a big contributor with her offensive arsenal, while Claudia Tischler and Alicia Clark, both Gr. 8, played outstanding offense and defense for the lady Eagles.
The Gr. 6 boys basketball team finished the season strong after battling injuries early in the year. Early in the season, they lost Jacob Diaz with a shoulder injury, and sustained many other minor injuries to key players. After overcoming these setbacks, the Eagles rebounded through the leadership of superstars Nicholas LaBruna and Rohan Desikan to finish strong in league. Coach Walid Fahmy, said, “Overall, the season was a great success. Look out for these boys as they move on to seventh grade!”
Coach Mousa Katwan credits the camaradarie of the JV B1 team for helping them finish the season strongly. On December 14, the boys beat Saint Joseph’s Sacred Heart in the WBAL tournament, after losing to them twice earlier in the season. Katwan remarked, “Strong play down low from Alex Mo gave us an advantage on offense, while the strength and heart of Nick Bean on defense stopped opposing teams’ efforts. Overall the boys learned a lot and grew together while having fun.”
The Gr. 4 team got off to a slow start with only two days of practice before the team’s first game. Coach Jim McGovern reported, however, “The boys jelled quickly and worked on playing an exciting fast-break style of basketball.” Although the season record was 3-5, the boys were very close to flipping those numbers as two losses were only by one point each. Standout performances were by Eric Andrus, who received the Eagle award for his outstanding effort and team play all season long, and Sid Chari and Brando Pakel who received Coaches awards for their extraordinary defense and hustle. McGovern added, “I look forward to the continued effort and love for the game by this group of players.”
Jan. 26 2001
The lower and middle schools’ early winter sports of boys basketball and girls soccer recently concluded with some impressive results from our young athletes; but first, some wrapping-up information from last season:
Harker News Online mis-reported the varsity A flag football team final record. The team finished the season with an impressive 13-3-2 record.
The Gr. 4-5 JV girls softball team was league champion with a 5-1-1 record.
The cross country team, boys and girls, took second place overall at the WBAL meet at Bayfront Park in Menlo Park in mid-October.
Both boys and girls swim teams, Gr. 5-8, took third place at the end-of-season WBAL meet at Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep in San Francisco in Mid-October.
On to this season!
In middle school boys basketball the Gr. 8 varsity A team finished 3-7. In the last game, the boys lost to Pinewood in the in the fifth-place game of the WBAL tournament. The team was led in scoring all season long by Brian Bither, who was also the team’s best defender. One big blow to the team came when starting forward Kevin Moss broke his finger at the beginning of winter vacation and was unable to play for the remainder of the season. In his place, Huck Vaughan and Adarsh Battu stepped up and played much bigger roles in his stead to complement the team’s other primary forward, Sean Youn. The team’s Gr. 7 player, lefthander Eric Holt, showed a great deal of promise for the future and had a couple of strong games, including one in the WBAL playoff game versus Crystal Springs. Nick Navarro and John Hughes shared the other guard spot most of the season, and Ashwin Chalaka played a supporting role, along with Travis Chen. Kevin Duraiswamy also provided some help early in the season before moving on to success in debate. The team’s three victories came against Pinewood, Crystal Springs and Woodside Priory.
According to coach Greg Lawson, “The varsity A squad improved defensively over the course of the season, but were frustrated at times by difficulty putting the ball in the basket.” He added, ”There was wonderful and broad support from the boys’ parents, who were regulars at every game. I want to make sure that they know how much I and the boys appreciated their presence and support.” Lawson added that he also thanks the boys for their effort and hard work throughout the season.
The Gr. 7 varsity B team finished league play 7-0 making them league champs! The Gr. 7 varsity B2 team finished 3-4, and our Gr. 7 varsity B3 team finished 1-6. In Gr. 6, our JV A team finished 2-7 and our JV B team finished 4-5.
Our Gr. 5 JV B1 team finished 4-4, and the JV B2 team finished 2-7. The Gr. 4 JV C team finished 3-5.
Coaches Tobias Wade, also a LS social studies teacher, and David Ramos both enjoyed the season with the B2 team. “Our boys practiced and played hard,” Wade reported. “Even though our record did not have as many wins as we wanted, we gave our best effort. We left everything we had on the court. It was a learning experience for our boys and everyone improved throughout the whole season.
“Our boys matured and developed both on and off the courts. Good sportsmanship and fun were a priority. I am proud of their effort, and have nothing but respect for them. Well done, guys!” Finally, the coaches thank all the parents for their help and support. Wade concluded, “We could not have done it without you!”
In middle school girls soccer our Gr. 8 varsity A team finished the season with a 2-5 record. The Gr. 7 varsity B team was 2-5 and Gr. 6 varsity A ended 1-5.
Coach Justin “Sully” Sullivan commented on the vast improvement of the Gr. 7 varsity B team, which showed in their strong finish of their final four games, where they won two of the four and nearly earned a draw in another. Excellent goaltending and field play by Savi Joshi was an important part of the team’s improvement.
Sullivan mentioned several field players as having particularly strong play, including Diba Massihpour, with excellent hustle and consistent hard play, Megy Appalaraju, who displayed dedication, hard work and a positive attitude and team leader Reena Sandhu, who had a late season goal streak. With several returning players, next year’s soccer season looks to be an exciting one.
Despite the season record of the JV A team, coach Cyrus Merrill, also a MS history and social science teacher, has many memories that show the strength and growth of his team. He recalls Mary Najibi incorporating scissors (a foot maneuver she learned in practice) “to burn by a defender,” and contributing fast runs down the flank, making nice crosses to Alisa Wakita,” who used her incredibly quick feet to score several goals. Regan Heslop was commended for a strong dominant lead in both the central defense and in helping to tutor the goalkeeper. Tong Wu never missed a practice and developed into a very tough outside defender and Ankita Sharma contributed a very strong leg on long crosses. Shannon Richardson played physically tough at forward and scored on one of the league’s toughest teams, while Jenny Kim helped anchor the defense with confidence and excellent ball control.
Merrill added, “The ladies played even with a number of the teams in the league and surprised many of them with early goals and strong play. We played a number of nail-biter games where we would either go ahead and the other team would come back to score goals to tie it up … or in dramatic fashion we scored three goals in the second half to come back and draw even with one of the other soccer powers in our league.” The girls enjoyed practicing next to the upper school girls soccer team at Blackford this season. Merrill noted, “These ladies should contribute in the years to come and to hopefully one day be members of the high school varsity soccer team.”
The Gr. 5 JV B girls soccer team finished 5-0-1 to take the league championship! This makes it back-to-back league championships for the Gr. 5 girls softball and soccer teams this year. Coach Casey Henderson reports that goal keeper Marti Sutton was amazing and fearless of the ball. She also added, “The girls demonstrated a wide variety of skills and enthusiasm during the season. We can only be proud and hope that the girls continue to develop their skills for years to come.”
Henderson also coached the combined Gr. 4-5 intramural team. “The girls showed a lot of heart and love for the game. They were always in a great mood with their amazing encouragements for their fellow players. Vanessa Tyagi, Gr. 4 and Amrita Singh, Gr. 5, could always brighten the field.”